EIS: It Can Work in the Public Sector
Advances in the development of executive information systems (EIS) have predominantly occurred in the private sector, with far less progress taking place in the public sector. Surely, the need for EIS in the public sector exists. Despite problems of EIS development in the public sector, successful systems can be built. This paper explores the differences between public and private systems and describes an EIS developed for a large agency of the New York state government. The system is being used in different and creative ways, leading to a change in the organization’s culture, with implicit and explicit impact on the focus of the organization and its measurement systems. A key feature of the system is its very low development cost. Sensitivity to cost and risk inhibits development in public agencies, and in the private sector as well. The approach described includes the use of standard, easily available programming and software tools for development and prototyping with live data. An iterative process was employed to develop new data where no previously existed. The experience reported here highlights how commitment from top management is a primary factor for EIS success in the public sector, even more so than in the private sector.
|Lakshmi Mohan, William K. Holstein, and Robert B. Adams
|Executive information systems, government information systems, private sector vs. public sector systems, data problems, implementation issues, prototyping